Rules Index

Chapter 10: Game Mastering / Hazards

Triggering a Hazard

Source Core Rulebook pg. 520 1.1
If the group fails to detect a hazard and the hazard’s trigger is a standard part of traveling (such as stepping on a floor plate or moving through a magical sensor while walking), the hazard’s reaction occurs. Hazards that would be triggered only when someone directly manipulates the environment—by opening a door, for example—use their reactions only if a PC explicitly takes that action.

Reaction or Free Action

Source Core Rulebook pg. 520 1.1
Most hazards have reactions that occur when they’re triggered. For simple hazards, the reaction is the entirety of the hazard’s effect. For complex hazards, the reaction may also cause the hazard to roll initiative, either starting a combat encounter or joining one already in progress, and the hazard continues to pose a threat over multiple rounds. Some hazards have a triggered free action instead of a reaction; for instance, quicksand can suck down multiple creatures per round.


Source Core Rulebook pg. 520 1.1
A complex hazard usually follows a set of preprogrammed actions called a routine. Once triggered, the hazard first performs its initial reaction; then, if the PCs are not yet in encounter mode, they should roll initiative. (If they’re already in encounter mode, their initiative remains the same.) The hazard might tell you to roll initiative for it—in this case, the hazard rolls initiative using its Stealth modifier.

After this happens, the hazard follows its routine each round on its initiative. The number of actions a hazard can take each round, as well as what they can be used for, depend on the hazard.

Resetting a Hazard

Source Core Rulebook pg. 520 1.1
Some hazards can be reset, allowing them to be triggered again. This can occur automatically, as for quicksand, whose surface settles after 24 hours, or manually, like a hidden pit, whose trapdoor must be closed for the pit to become hidden again.